2021 AIA/ACSA Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education awarded to Kathryn Anthony

WASHINGTON – Dec. 11, 2020 - The Board of Directors and the Strategic Council of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) along with the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) today announced Kathryn H. Anthony, Ph.D, as the 2021 recipient of the AIA/ACSA Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education.

The AIA/ACSA Topaz Medallion honors an individual who has been intensely involved in architecture education for more than a decade and whose teaching has influenced a broad range of students.

For more than four decades Anthony has served as one of the profession’s most prominent guiding forces, urging architects and the public to embrace the importance of designing spaces for people and designing for diversity. Having influenced a long list of distinguished architects and educators around the world, Anthony is widely recognized for placing diversity, inclusion, and social justice at the forefront of her pedagogy.

Anthony, who holds a Ph.D. in architecture and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of California at Berkeley, has been a force at her alma mater, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. At the University of Illinois, Anthony is its longest-serving female faculty member in the history of the School of Architecture, one of the first women to receive promotion to full professor, and the first woman to chair both its design program faculty and building research council. She has served as Chair of the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women and Co-Chair of the Provost’s Gender Equity Council.

For many years, Anthony has served as the faculty advisor for her university’s National Organization of Minority Architecture (NOMA) Students chapter, which was recognized by NOMA as its 2016 student chapter of the year. Chicago Women in Architecture recognized Anthony with its Lifetime Achievement Award in 2020 for “chiefly addressing issues of gender and diversity in design.”

Visit  AIA’s website to learn more about Anthony’s selection as the AIA 2021 Topaz Medallion recipient.


Founded in 1857, AIA consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through more than 200 international, state and local chapters, AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing.

AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation, and world. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards.


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